Losing Our Leaves

Here’s this in my sometimes too-much-adult world: my 14-year-old and her friends have been diligently doing odd jobs for weeks now — stacking wood, planting bulbs, painting, and raking leaves.

She showed me a photo today of herself and the friend she’s known for years leaping backwards into an enormous pile of leaves they’d raked. I sure hope the homeowner laughed as hard as I did.

We did not come to remain whole.
We came to lose our leaves like the trees,
The trees that are broken
And start again, drawing up on great roots;
Like mad poets captured by the Moors,
Men who live out
A second life.

— Robert Bly

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By Brett Ann Stanciu

Brett Ann Stanciu lives with her two daughters in Hardwick, Vermont. Her creative nonfiction book, Unstitched: My Journey to Understand Opioid Addiction and How People and Communities Can Heal, will be published by Steerforth Press in September 2021. Her novel about rural life in Vermont, Hidden View, was published in 2015.

2 comments

  1. Reading this and listening to rain fall. Thinking of our unraked leaves. Unplanted bulbs. My mom is in the hospital and these things will just have to wait. Your words are wonderful in the midst of a hard week, as is that picture of girls falling into leaves.

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